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Great Falls of the Passaic River at Paterson, N.J

Great Falls of the Passaic River at Paterson, N.J.




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Program to Maintain and Update Groundwater Models to Evaluate Continued WaterSupply Development in New Jersey

Project Title:NJ150 Program to Maintain and Update Groundwater Models to Evaluate Continued WaterSupply Development in New Jersey
Project Number: LJ00AB5
Project Chief:
Project Start Date: 01-OCT-1994
Project End Date: 30-SEP-2012

Project Objectives

The general objective of this program is to maintain groundwater models that were developed and used in prior water-supply investigations. This maintenance effort will accomplish several objectives:

  1. archive models to permit the efficient continued use of models to address changes in water-supply demands
  2. evaluate the models to define and prioritize required improvements
  3. to update and improve selected models.

This program is planned to continue in an ongoing manner.

Statement of Problem

Development of water supply is a dynamic condition, and demand areas may shift, or quality or quantity concerns may change in a former study area. In order to continue the utility of these models to the N.J. Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), a maintenance program will update the relevant models so that new simulations can be made to incorporate recent shifts or changes in development.

During the study of many water-supply investigations, the U.S. Geological Survey has used results from groundwater-flow models as the principal approach to understanding and predicting the effects of water-supply development. The areas of the models range from 2.3 to 9,000 square miles, cover a diverse geologic range, and are in various states of calibration. Some of the models are from older projects, calibrated to hydrologic conditions up through the 1970ís.

New advanced techniques to analyze model results are being developed over time, yet models used in completed studies cannot take advantage of these new techniques without first performing any necessary updates to the model code or to the model input or output. Further, the techniques must either be used on model results from the time of the study completion, or updates to system representation must be made prior to use of the new advanced analytical technique. This provides an additional incentive to keep the models in an updated state.

Strategy and Approach

A standard updating and archiving procedure facilitates efficient retrieval, update, and reuse of selected groundwater flow models. This standard procedure will be applied to those ground- water models constructed for NJDEP to analyze water-supply development in New Jersey during the prior decade or so, that are deemed to have likely future use. The procedure will also be used for all models developed for NJDEP by the USGS New Jersey District in the future. These models could be considered out of date and may require some degree of renovation through calibration to more recent conditions. Some of the models are derived from more recent studies and should not require recalibration or extensive updating.

The archive contains an analysis of the investigation in which the model was used, the model input files, the model output files, any pre- and post-processor file-management techniques or pro≠cedures, and programs used to display results of the investigation. Whenever possible, the opera≠tional procedures for running models is standardized, as part of the archival process. The aim of the archive is to insure that the models are available for use in an efficient manner, which will allow for concise scenario evaluation with the minimum of effort.

A priority of models that need improvement will be established by the NJDEP. The prioritization will include consideration of the needs discussed above and the cost and time constraints of each improvement as determined by the USGS. During the course of this study, the model or models that could fulfill the needs of new groundwater studies will be identified and if need, the model will be updated. The ability of new and advanced techniques to improve model results will also be evaluated.

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